Seinfeld is my all-time favorite TV show. The “show about nothing” coined so many great catch phrases and even created its own fake holiday.
Festivus was a holiday that George Costanza’s father, Frank, made up to offset the greed and commercialism of Christmas. Festivus, generally believed to be celebrated on December 23 (today), included a solitary aluminum pole rather than a tree and also included the airing of grievances.
During the airing of grievances, everyone would voice their issues with each other. This type of venting can often be found at many family dinner tables, but during Festivus it was ceremonial. And then after the airing of grievances, would be the feats of strength, where one chosen member would pin the head of household.
So as an homage to Festivus and to lighten the mood a little, I wanted to do an airing of grievances for the 2021 Mustang Mach-E. There won’t be any feats of strength however, due to social distancing.
The 2021 Mustang Mach-E is perhaps one of the most controversial vehicles Ford has produced over the years. The name alone generates controversy. And I admit I had a lot to do with that. And while I still wholly oppose the Mustang badging and name being used on a crossover, I at least understand Ford’s logic and accept it.
How The Mustang Name Came To Get Put On An Electric Crossover
There was a story in the Detroit Free Press about how the Mustang name came to get put on a crossover. The full story can be found here.
But basically the original design of the all-electric crossover, which was supposed to be the wave of the future was incredibly dull and boring. It lacked personality and when then CEO Jim Hackett saw it, they scrapped it and went to back to the drawing board.
Then Hackett and his right-hand man Jim Farley, who is now CEO, decided to do something crazy. And that was incorporate features of the Mustang into this all-electric crossover. It was first met with push back from Ford chairman Bill Ford Jr.
But Hackett and Farley swayed him and they created a crossover and had the audacity to put Mustang styling cues on it, and also the hallowed Mustang logo. This would be met with blasphemy by many and curiosity by others. But certainly a buzz was created.
So with that back story, let’s air some grievances over the Mustang Mach-E.
First grievance: The name
Without a doubt any time I write about the Mach-E, even if it’s something as silly as the commercial Ford aired starring Chevy Chase re-enacting a famous scene from Christmas Vacation, I still get vitriolic comments.
Like clockwork, the old schoolers chime in with the #NotAMustang hashtag. I had a hand in that when I created the petition to remove the Mustang name from the crossover. I like to think I have my finger on the pulse of the Mustang community.
So, my official airing of the grievance as it relates to the name is, I wish Ford hadn’t done that. But, as it was reported in the Free Press story that means the pony car Mustang even with a V8 will live on, I can forgive the error in judgement if it means the Mustang muscle car will carry on.
Second grievance: Delayed deliveries
Let’s be honest, the pandemic has thrown Ford and their production and deliveries off. The Ford Bronco deliveries have been pushed back several times to the point where Bronco enthusiasts’ patience is wearing quite thin.
Now for the Mach-E the rollout and arrival on lots is quite ambiguous and delays are to be expected. In fact, Ford sent out the following statement to dealers regarding the Mach-E arrival:
“With great anticipation we are thrilled to share that the first 21MY Mustang Mach-Es are shipping from the plant and heading their way to your dealership for customer deliveries. We are projecting a couple thousand will be released for shipping this year and anticipate some vehicles will arrive by the end of this year. Please note Retail Customers will receive automatic email alerts on their vehicle status from Produced, Shipped and Estimated Delivery or they can view status via their account on Ford.com. Dealers can check status through vehicle visibility. As customers begin to arrive to take delivery of these first Mustang Mach-E units, there are three very important Pre-delivery items we want to remind you of: Ensure that the vehicle is at 100% state of charge at time of delivery Leave time prior to delivery for pre-conditioning of the vehicle to ensure that the battery has the opportunity to reach optimal range and performance state while still on the charger. Also, do not forget to remind the customer of the benefits of pre-conditioning their vehicle via the setting of departure times through the FordPass App or the in-vehicle SYNC4A touchscreen. Click here to access a Frontline article that serves as a good refresher on battery management. In order to ensure accurate battery and range readings re-set the vehicle’s driver history settings through the SYNC4A touchscreen. Follow these steps to do so: From the home screen tap the vehicle icon in the top left corner > Settings > Vehicle > EV Diving History Reset At day of delivery please reference the “Know Before You Go” guide – click here – to ensure the customer gets the fully connected vehicle experience. See EFC 08700 for Further Launch Support Initiatives from FCSD."
Ford would be wise to be transparent about deliveries with customers. The Mach-E will have a hard sell to many so it would be advisable to not alienate those who have shown passion for this revolutionary vehicle. Learn from the mistakes of the Bronco and don’t repeat them.
Third grievance: Performance Package summer tires
I conducted an interview with my friend Jim Halderman about how he was trading in his V8 Mustang GT convertible for a Mustang Mach-E GT. But when I asked if he was going to add the recently announced performance package he said no and had a good reason for it.
Halderman sited the summer tires, which are the only tires available on the PE, as the reason he won’t opt for it. He said, “Summer tires do provide increased handling but because of the rubber compounding (my son was a tire development engineer) means that they should not be used when the temperature is lower than 45 degrees. Because I plan on using the Mustang Mach E GT all year, I want high-performance all-season tires.”
So, my final grievance is that Ford should remember where they’re based (Dearborn, Michigan) and remember that many of us live in cold environments four months a year. Summer tires aren’t appealing to many people.
So here it is Festivus 2020. A year that has many of us screaming “Serenity Now” and certainly a year full of many grievances, I hope you enjoyed these airing of grievances against the upcoming 2021 Mustang Mach-E. As this vehicle starts to win me over a little (although I haven’t driven yet), that alone is a Festivus miracle!
I’m sure you have your own grievances to air, so feel free to leave your grievances below in the comments section.
Jimmy Dinsmore has been an automotive journalist for more than a decade and been a writer since the high school. His Driver’s Side column features new car reviews and runs in several newspapers throughout the country. He is also co-author of the book “Mustang by Design” and “Ford Trucks: A Unique Look at the Technical History of America’s Most Popular Truck”. Also, Jimmy works in the social media marketing world for a Canadian automotive training aid manufacturing company. Follow Jimmy on Facebook, Twitter, at his special Ford F-150 coverage on Twitter and LinkedIn. You can read the most of Jimmy's stories by searching Torque News Ford for daily Ford vehicle report.